Tagged with "Tampa Bay Rays"
Deep Thoughts 7-24-13
Category: FEATURED
Tags: Ryan Braun Alex Rodriguez Baseball and Peds Phil Mickelson wins a major LA Dodgers and Tampa Bay Rays Yasiel Puig and Christian Yelich



Hello and welcome to another Wednesday of deep thoughts. The news of the day has to be Ryan Braun’s season ending suspension. This suspension ends suggestions about MLB waiting until next year to begin handing out Biogenesis punishment. Many will see Braun’s suspension as just or perhaps not enough…but I see something else. I see great change among the players. No longer are the guilty allowed to hide behind the MLBPA as so many of us suspected would happen. Nope…the rank and file baseball players have been heard. Now, the guilty must stand naked, if you will to the charges of cheating the game of baseball. I like the player that Ryan Braun is. I respect his talent, but think that he got what he deserved. For those of you that have grown cynical with peds in sports, this is the sign that we have been waiting for. If the majority of the players are clean, then the actions of the player’s union should convey the thoughts of the majority.








In many respects, Ryan Braun is a coward. He managed to escape a positive test due to a technicality. This time, he realized that there was too much evidence for him to claim innocence. Each of us makes mistakes. Most of us realize that the best course of action is to admit a mistake and move forward. Braun was forced to admit that his previous claims of innocence were wrong. For this, there is no defense. In the end, Braun had to take his medicine, but a much larger dose. There is no doubt that this stain on his reputation will linger forever more. I will never forget Rafael Palmerio wagging his finger at Congress and I will never be able to forget Braun’s seemingly sincere claim of innocence.


History has a way of changing the facts over time. Heroes of tomorrow are not necessarily heroes today…but my gut tells me that Braun will never escape the manner that he was caught. There is no honor in cheating and even less in lying. As we stand in the middle of this scandal, many will be unable to see the good that is emerging. But, good is here and my prediction is that it will spread. There are players willing to play by the rules and their numbers are many. A line in the sand has been drawn and the majority has taken the needed step. As fans, we must remember that nothing is forever and the game of baseball is amazingly resilient.

In a practical sense, Braun got off lucky. He has been injured and his team is out of the playoff chase. Losing the rest of this year is no great loss. He has a long term contract and will play for many years to come. Alex Rodriguez is a different story. ARod has begged our forgiveness before. I suspect that MLB will lay the wood to the backside of his baseball career. Rodriguez gambled and lost…and who among us cares? This could be a boon for the Yankees if they are able to void the remainder of his contract. But, there are other players on the hot seat and suspensions could impact their teams. Nelson Cruz and Johnny Peralta are on teams with playoff aspirations. It will be very interesting to see how this plays out. Is there enough evidence for them to lose time this year? Will the MLBPA step in to aid them if there is spotty proof? Let there be no doubt, there will be more pain before this is done.  I am convinced that we are moving to a better place. I am also encouraged that I see light at the end of this long tunnel…I just hope it is not a train.


Since the All Star game, I have continued to marvel at the LA Dodgers surge. Now, I am not a Dodger’s fan…but I cannot ignore the level of play that they continue to produce. I have repeatedly pounded the drum for Yasiel Puig. Of course he has cooled off a bit at the plate, but his defense has remained outstanding. The great players find a way to help their team. Sometimes, it is with a bat…others with a glove. Always, the great players find a way to help their team. Puig made two tremendous plays while going ofer at the plate. Puig threw a pea from right field to nail Bryce Harper. Although the umpire blew the call, it was impressive nonetheless. Puig made another play crashing into wall, but managed to secure the out. Another team has been fueled by a rookie, the Tampa Bay Rays. Since Wil Myers was called up, the Rays have been torrid…winning 18 of 20 games (until losing Tuesday night to Boston). There is something to adding a big league ready bat to the lineup that really can jump start a team. Of course, the Rays have a battle ahead of them, but Myers adds a valuable piece to the middle of their lineup. Although the Marlins are out of the playoff race, they called up a talented outfielder named Christian Yelich. He is another young talent to watch.

In case you missed the tremendous throw by Puig…here it is: For you haters; I dare you to find fault with this…







                    Damn...what else is there to say? Can you believe that Blue called him safe? Oh well, that does not take away from the great throw.

I do not know Yasiel Puig. I only know what I see. My eyes see the same skill set and approach to the game of WIllie Mays. Puig has much to prove before he reaches that lofty place...but why do so many refuse to see the talent? Why do so many want to look for flaws instead of enjoying the talent?








Since I am an old guy, I have to take a minute to tip my hat to 43 year old Phil Mickelson for winning the British Open. In an era of me first athletes, it is great to see a nice guy like Lefty win a major. For those of you thinking that he comes home with a suitcase full of money...check this out:

Thanks to some hefty taxes in England and California, where Mickelson resides, estimates have Lefty only bringing home around 40 percent of the $1.4 million that he earned at Muirfield. According to ESPN, the United Kingdom takes nearly half of Mickelson's winnings ($628,900), while California will take another 13.3 percent ($192,300).


Now, 40% of 1.4 million is still nothing to sneeze at...but losing 60% is ridiculous as far as I am concerned.


I also think it is worth mentioning that Mickelson is 6 years older than Tiger. Mickelson's win should remind us that Tiger's window for winning a few majors is not completely closed. While it is certainly far from a sure thing that Tiger catches Jack...I have a difficult time imagining that Tiger does not win at least a couple more.






In the course of our journey, there are times when we face obstacles. Sully is recovering from surgery on Tuesday and is in need of not only our thoughts and prayers, but our financial help as well. I have faced tough times and understand how difficult it is to ask and accept help. Please take the time to reach out to Kevin…anything helps.



That’s all I have today, but I will leave you with a bit of Jack Handey:



Remember, kids in the backseat cause accidents; accidents in the backseat cause kids.


"I think people tend to forget that trees are living creatures. They're sort of like dogs. Huge, quiet, motionless dogs, with bark instead of fur."



Thanks for stopping by and feel free to leave a few deep thoughts of your own…






Random Thoughts
Category: FEATURED
Tags: ScottJax77 Tampa Bay Rays Devon Walker Replacement Refs RG3 NFL. Syracuse Football Tennis Notre Dame

One year ago ScottJax went under the knife, ScottJax’s favorite song, NFL, Rays, Walker and more in this week edition of….

Let’s never forget what happened on September 11, 2001

Wow, today marks the one year anniversary of my hip replacement surgery. There are days that I walk fast, and there are days that I start off good and as the night progresses at work I start to slow down. My surgeon did not want me to do heavy lifting. But, in the Postal world you are suppose to be able to lift up to 75 pounds. In my 15 years in the Post Office I have never had to lift that much. But lifting 20 pounds can be a chore, not the least is the wear and tear of the hip. Still no running and hopping. That is to prevent strain on the hip. Bending down is better, though sometimes it takes a minute to get down and get up. But I don’t feel anywhere near the pain and discomfort I use to and that is good. The only bad thing is that I will need another hip replacement for my other hip. I am trying to hold off for four more years.

For a person who is a very upbeat person this is one of my favorite songs..


The Fighting Irish are going to join the ACC in every sport except football, yet they plan on playing 5 ACC football games a year. So are you in, or are you out of the ACC for football? It seems to me your all-in, except you don’t want to give out any of your $$$ your making from NBC.

The Tampa Bay Rays played the Yankees at home with a chance to surpass the first place team, yet only 28,585, 17,652 and 16,711 attended. MLB should consider moving the Rays.

Tulane’s Safety Devon Walker is in stable condition following an operation to repair a cervical spine fraction. The injury occurred during Saturday’s game against Tulsa, in a head-on collision with his teammate. See the video above.

Some NFL milestones were reached this past Sunday. Tom Brady is now in 5th place on the all-time career touchdown list with 302. Brady also is in 5th place in wins by a quarterback with 125. Peyton Manning threw is 400th and 401st touchdown pass, and is in third place. Bill Belichick recorded his 193rd victory, which outs him in a tie for 8th place on the all-time list with Chuck Knox.

Props got to go to RG3, as he led the Washington Redskins to an upset win over the New Orleans Saints, 40-32.

There is now talk that replacement refs will be around to at least week 5 of the NFL season.

David Aker’s kicked a record tying 63-yard field goal. Take a look at the expression on his face when he made it. Classic.

Andy Murray is the first British tennis player in 76 years to win a Grand Slam tournament.

Good-by to Andy Roddick, who retired after his match at the US Open. He won over $20 million during his 12-year career. He won 32 singles titles and 4 double titles and was 609-212 in career singles matches. His only draw-back was for as much talent as he had he only one 1 Grand Slam event and was the runner-up in four others (losing to Federer each time).

Is USC in trouble? Syracuse raked up 450 yards on offensive against the #2 team in the nation. Again, with all the offense Cuse racked up, they still lost, 42-29. Come to think of it the Orange had more total offense than the Trojans 455-445. Wow who would have thought that?? Syracuse is now 0-2.

Next up for Cuse, Stoney Brook.

Jerry “The King” Lawler is in ICU following a heart attack on Monday Night Raw. His son say he doesn’t look too well. There is talk that Lawler might have suffered brain damage. This is speculation due to the lack of oxygen that went to the brain following his collapse.

Is MLB babying its pitchers? It seems to me that no pitcher comes close to 275 innings, let alone 300 innings, which use to be the standard. It looks like maybe 3 pitchers will pitch 250 innings.

Til Next time












Rants and Raves
Category: FEATURED
Tags: Detroit Lions Rants and Raves Random Thoughts NBA Tampa Bay Rays

Is it time for a name change, Lions on the move, NBA, Rays and more in this weeks edition of……………


Wow, it has been just over one-year since I started Rants and Raves. I have had a great time doing this week-in, week-out. I hope to continue for quite a while. But I have decided to change the name of my blog, from Rants and Raves to….Drum rolls please……


 Da-Dah. So starting next week, my blog will be called Random Thoughts. I hope you will continue to enjoy my blogs. 

It is amazing that the Detroit Lions had two consecutive weeks of coming back from 20 point deficits to win a game. They just might be the team to beat.

No wait, the Green Bay Packers are the team to beat. Oh, I'm so confused. Can anyone help me??

I, for one, am on record to say that I don’t care if there is no NBA season. Can’t believe that the Owners and Players waited until the last minute to sit down and talk about the collective bargaining agreement. It’s all about the $$$. Too bad it’s the fans that get screwed in the end. It will just mean that the prices of seats, food, drinks and stuff in the team shop will go up.


Wouldn’t it be refreshing if all sports reduce prices 15%. 


Tampa Bay Rays had only 28,299 fans for game 4 of their wild card against the Texas Rangers. When will MLB realize they made a mistake by putting a team in Tampa. Maybe that’s the problem. The team is actually in St. Petersburg. 

Do you really think that Albert Pujols is going to leave the Cardinals? 

Cubs should go after Fielder. He could hit 60 home runs for the Cubbies. 

Let’s go Islanders!!! They have a young team. Just hope they finally make the playoffs. 

Favre just can’t keep his mouth shut, can he? I just hope Rogers leads the Packers to another Super Bowl win. Then Rogers would have twice as many Super Bowl wins then Brett. 

I don’t think there is a clear winner for the Stanley Cup this year. Since the Sporting News is saying San Jose I will go with the Pittsburgh Penguins or Washington Capitals.


Rehab is going well. I can now walk to blocks with a walker.


Til next time




Top 10 MLB pre-playoff chokes
Category: MLB
Tags: Boston Red Sox St. Louis Cardinals Philadelphia Phillies Atlanta Braves Baltimore Orioles Tampa Bay Rays New York Yankees New York Mets

“7-20 in September. We go 9-18, we’re where we want to be. 9-18 is what, winning a third of your games? The worst teams in baseball win a third of their games.”

–Theo Epstein

First of all, I recommend checking out the timelines of what went on Wednesday. Having three games like that happen at once doesn’t happen in the playoffs, that might be more memorable than anything I have to say about how historic the “collapses” (euphemism for choke) were.

Here are three good timelines:




Obviously the Rays have returned to the playoffs with a vengeance, but the main topic is I still want to talk about how they and the Cardinals got there and to give some historical perspective on those collapses. That’s why I don’t blog about baseball much. By the time you sit down to think about it and research and so forth, something else important is going on. The Yankees/Tigers game was postponed as I was writing this, so that helped me finish without too much distraction.

I mentioned in a couple of places after the Red Sox had the 3-13 stretch (or some approximation thereof) that I couldn’t find another team that had ever done that in September, not even the 1964 Phillies, who had a 10-game losing streak in September. Those Phillies went 4-13 for one stretch, but that was followed by two wins (in the last two games of the season) and preceded by a 3-game winning streak. The Phillies were 2 ½ behind in the second-to-last game but technically were not eliminated until the next day. So that was also less dramatic.

Looking at the full month though, it’s not even closer. The Phillies won 13 games in September ’64, the same number the Angels (a team I follow a good bit) won this September. The Angels gained 6 ½ games against the Red Sox in the month. After the 3-13 stretch by the Red Sox and before the Angels finished with four consecutive losses, the Angels had gained 8 games on the Red Sox for the month.

So if you compare the Septembers of the 2011 Red Sox and 1964 Cardinals, the Red Sox would have lost 13 games against the Cardinals. So that’s about twice as many games as the Phillies lost (the Phillies actually lost 7 games from the beginning of the month to the end, but that regular season actually ended on October 4; the Phillies lost 6 ½ in the last 28 days of their season, so by that calculation, it is twice as many games).

I did notice the coincidence of the Phillies playing the Braves on Wednesday and helping to send the Cardinals to the post-season yet gain. It’s also a coincidence in that by causing the Braves to lose, that’s arguably another team that passes up their 1964 team in choking.

Continue reading...

Rants and Raves
Category: FEATURED
Tags: MLB Wild Card Buffalo Bills Detroit Lions Atlanta Braves St. Louis Cardinals Boston Red Sox Tampa Bay Rays

I am now home and starting in-house rehab. It feels good to be home. My experience at the Rehab center was very pleasant. They treated all the patients well. Most of us had hip or knee operations. But is is still good to be home with the family.

Its almost 11:30 pm, on the last day of baseball and Major League Baseball still hasn't decided its wild card baseball teams. This is exactly what baseball wanted when it created the playoff format.

The Yankees had a 7 run lead against the Rays, but the Rays scored 6 in the 8th and 1 in the 9th to tie the score. Now the game is going into extra innings. You have to love it.

Its 11:42 and the Atlanta Braves just lost to the Phillies allowing the St. Louis Cardinals to win the Wild Card. The Braves had a nice lead in the wild card race heading into September but injuries to their starting pitching and their young relief corps just got tired from overload, allowed the Cardinals to win the Wild Card.

The Boston Red Sox had a big lead in the Wild Card race over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Its now mid-night and Baltimore has just tied the Red Sox in the bottom of the ninth. Baltimore has just beaten the Red Sox in the bottom of the ninth. Ya gotta love it.

Rays and Yankees are still playing Its in the 12th.

Oops its now 12:05 at the Rays just took the AL Wild Card Race with a line drive home run by Evan Longoria


It is refreshing to see that the Buffalo Bills might be the real deal after beating the New England Patriots, this past Sunday. Hopefully they will continue to play well the rest of the season.

Detroit Lions are playing well. They have a great defense, and the team is hungry. Could they be the best in the NFC??

I can't wait until the Jaguars get rid of Coach Del Rio. Why he is still the coach is all about the $$$.

The Raiders and Jets always play great games against each other.



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